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Michael Wade Propst, 12, Faces Felony For School Bus Joyride


He was bus-ted.

A 12-year-old boy is facing a felony charge after allegedly stealing a school bus for a joy ride around Panama City, Florida.

Michael Wade Propst was arrested Tuesday morning after police got a call from someone who spotted a juvenile driving a school bus near a Walmart, reports.

A deputy pulled the bus over around 5:30 a.m. and discovered the youngster, later identified as Propst, driving the bus.

The bus was parked in front of the driver's home with the keys still inside, according to Chief Mike Jones of the Bay School District's Safety and Security Department. Police say Propst was riding his bike around 4 a.m. when he saw the unlocked boss.

"Now what a 12-year-old is doing at 4 o'clock in the morning riding his bike around the neighborhood is a different story," Jones told WMBB TV. "But, he saw the door open, rode up to the door, saw the keys were in the ignition, and there was his opportunity, and he rode away."

Propst drove the bus nearly 15 miles to a Walmart when he was finally pulled over and arrested.

Jones said security cameras on the boss captured Propst's alleged bus ride.

"We watched him on the video, and you would have thought he was one of our trained bus drivers. Twelve years old, and he had no problem driving that bus. I was really shocked that he was able to do that."

Walmart employees weren't so impressed -- at least not when Propst allegedly tried to park the car.

"It was just odd the way [he was] driving it," Walmart employee Roy Hoover said, according to "He was having a hard time parking it, like he'd never drove one before."

Propst was charged with grand theft of an item worth more than $100,000 and felony criminal mischief. He also is charged with grand theft for a missing student recognition device worth about $2,000, according to

Police are also investigating an 8-foot-long scrape of white paint on one side of the bus that may have happened during the time the bus was taken, Newser reports.

The school district that owns the bus has suspended Brandon Curtis, 28, the actual driver, for two weeks for leaving the bus outside of his house, unlocked, with the key still inside, reports. The suspension was relatively light mostly because he had a clean record before this incident.

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